Lancer Spotlight 2/10/22: Mock Trial ends regular season victorious, 4-1

“Finding a balance is the key to making Mock Trial a fun experience, win or lose.”

The+Mock+Trial+team+poses+on+the+night+of+their+win+against+St.+Johns.

courtesy of Jamie Hendi

The Mock Trial team poses on the night of their win against St. John’s.

by Emily Rice and Leslie Zampier

Mock trial finished its regular season with a win against St. Johns Catholic Prep on February 8. Their season record is 4-1, with wins against TJ, Frederick, Walkersville, and St. Johns. They had one loss to Urbana.

The trial is a negligence case involving four college students who went into an abandoned building that was featured in a movie scene, and one of the students, Aaron Griggs, unfortunately died there. There is an open question as to whether the owner, Jodie Donahue, allowed them into the cabin, which could make Donahue responsible for Aaron’s death.

Mrs. Jamie Hendi and Mrs. Susan Peterson, both former lawyers, are the advisors of the group.

“One thing about Mock Trial is that there is always a surprise when you compete against others. So on one hand it’s really exciting. On the other hand it’s nerve wracking. You can’t control what the other side will object to, so you have to be quick on your feet if they do,” said defense attorney Ben Conway.

Most people on the team expressed that they prefer the plaintiff side of the case. They find it more challenging, Conway said, “ It’s a great feeling when you do actually prove something and leave the ‘jury’ and the other side stunned.”

The plaintiff is the side that initiates a law suit before court. This side has to seek a legal remedy. The court issues which judgment is in favor of the plaintiff and makes the appropriate court order.

The defense is trying to prove that this kid was trespassing and that’s how he died. The defendant is being accused of murder.”

— Abbey Landahl

COVID has greatly impacted the way Mock Trial works this year. Unfortunately, the team wasn’t able to argue in an actual courtroom compared to other years. Since COVID numbers have risen, the courthouses have closed. Masks have also made the whole process more difficult. With the muffled voices behind the masks, it’s challenging to hear everyone clearly.

Conway explained why he wanted to join the team, “I am pursuing a career of law which definitely had an impact on making me want to join Mock Trial. One of my friends introduced me to Mock Trial, and I found out that I was really good at it and I am so grateful that my friend got me to join.”

“This team worked extremely hard–out of 12 participants, only 4 had done Mock Trial before. Sue and I are proud of them,” said Hendi in a celebratory email to the staff.

The team will have their first playoff match on Tuesday, February 15 against Catoctin.

Congratulations to

Lawyers: Chloe Trevino, Zoe Theologou, Abbey Landahl, Ben Conway, Casey Landahl, Ashley Alt

Witnesses: Elaine Escamilla, Tom Olumide-Onabanjo, Abbey Landahl, Spencer McKinstry, Angela DeLaCruz, Taylor Gepes Carroll

Bailiff: Hunter Hall

Shadows: Jeff Joyal, Jack Winkler, Marcia Nunez Delgado, Mariana Berrios